How to Plant Fescue Seeds


Fescue is a cool-season, ornamental grass that is commonly used in lawns, but it is also grown in pastures. Two types exist: tall fescue and fine fescue. Fescue can be grown in semi-shady, or full sun locations. It is drought-resistant, and most varieties are disease resistant. Fescue is known for staying green late into the fall and grow best when the soil temperature is between 50 and 65 degrees F.

Step 1

Spread a 1-inch-thick layer of rotted manure, compost or similar organic material over the entire planting area. Fescue needs plenty of fertilizer. For every 500 square feet of planting area mix into the soil 10 pounds of 5-10-15 fertilizer, or similar. Then, cultivate the entire planting area thoroughly to a depth of between 6 and 8 inches. Use a garden fork, a shovel, or a rototiller, if you have the use of one.

Step 2

Remove all objects which can interfere with the growth of your fescue. This includes sticks, rocks and roots. Use a metal rake to smooth out and level the area.

Step 3

Scatter the fescue seeds, according to the type of fescue seed you are growing. Check the back of the directions on the back of the seed package as to the spread rate per 1,000 square feet. For home lawns, typically, it is at the rate of 6 to 8 pounds per 1,000 square feet.

Step 4

Rake the fescue seeds gently into the surface of the soil using a leaf rake to a depth of no more than 1/8 inch. Compact the fescue seeds into the surface of the soil. This is best accomplished by using what is called a lawn roller. A lawn roller is specifically used to compact the soil after planting grass seeds.

Step 5

Water the planted area for really. Use a fine mist of water and do not allow the water to pool up in areas. Try and provide the planted area with at least 1 inch of water immediately after planting.

Step 6

Water the planted area at least every other day. However, it may be necessary to water your fescue seeds every day, depending on whether. The idea is to keep the seed bed moist at all times. Try and provide enough water so that the top 1/2 to 3/4 inch of the soil is kept moist. Germination of fescue seeds can begin in seven days but can require as long as two weeks.

Things You'll Need

  • Fescue seeds
  • Fertilizer
  • Compost or similar organic matter
  • Shovel, garden fork, or rototiller
  • Metal rake
  • Leaf rake


  • Snake Fescue Seed
  • Pikes Nursery: Fescue Care
  • University of Missouri: Growing Tall Fescue

Who Can Help

  • Kansas State University: Tall Fescue Lawns
Keywords: germinating fescue seeds, growing fescue, planting fescue

About this Author

Katelyn Lynn is a certified holistic health practitioner who specializes in orthomolecular medicine and preventative modalities. She also has extensive experience in botany and horticulture. Lynn has been writing articles for various websites relating to health and wellness since 2007. She has been published on She is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in alternative medicine from Everglades University.